Cover image for Historical fictions : essays on literature
Historical fictions : essays on literature
Kenner, Hugh.
Personal Author:
Publication Information:
San Francisco : North Point Press, 1990.
Physical Description:
338 pages ; 23 cm
Format :

On Order

Reviews 2

Publisher's Weekly Review

For more than 40 years, the penetrating intelligence and sharp wit of Hugh Kenner have been delighting devotees of his literary criticism. Now, in this companion volume to Mazes , the Johns Hopkins professor brings together 43 more essays and reviews about writers who intrigue him--Beckett, Joyce, Pound, Yeats--and subjects that pique his interest--``fractals,'' poetic closure, romanticism, the mythological method. Whether shrewdly reassessing the bas reliefs of Agostino di Duccio, the poetry of Hopkins, Stevens and Williams, the notions of Wyndham Lewis, Flann O'Brien and Tom Wolfe, whether demonstrating the plagiarism of Coleridge and Heymann, the shortcomings of Deidre Bair, Saul Bellow, Richard Ellmann, Leslie Fiedler and Sean O'Faolain, or the gushiness of Sylvia Plath, Kenner is invariably a pleasure to read and learn from. A zesty, commendable book. (Sept.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved

Library Journal Review

In this companion to his recent Mazes ( LJ 4/1/89), Kenner collects 43 short essays and reviews published between 1970 and 1990. They are informal, often personal in tone. While many have a subterranean link to Kenner's preoccupation with Pound, Joyce, and High Modernism, the range of subject matter and interests is vast, from the sculptor Augustino del Duccio to Samuel Beckett. There are also a number of familiar pieces such as ``Who Was Leslie Fiedler?'' If Kenner is sometimes an intellectual exhibitionist and some of the topical allusions are dated, his essays nonetheless remain a delight to read.-- T.L. Cooksey, Armstrong State Coll., Savannah, Ga. (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.